Why fracking in the UK is absolutely the wrong move

“The best solutions to climate change are practical. There are thus strong environmental reasons to support British fracking.” So said the leading article in The Times newspaper yesterday, referring to the need for action after the latest alarming report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC). Elsewhere in the paper, there was the news that the government is drawing up new laws to allow fracking firms to drill under people’s homes without the permission of landowners. The Times leader put forward a supposed argument for fracking, “hard as it may be for traditional environmentalists to accept”. The article suggests that fracking has played a significant role in America’s reduction of carbon emissions, and that this is the way forward over here. No, it is not. Despite its apparent success in the USA, fracking will not and can not be successful over here, for many reasons.

FrackingbonkersTo be economically viable, there would have to be many thousands of wells and drilling rigs across the country. Many, many people’s lives and communities would be devastated in one way or another. The coming and going of the required massive trucks alone would be enough for many to protest. Downland, meadowland, farmland and woodland would be subject to wide-scale industrialization. In America, towns near fracking sites have had water supplies contaminated and running out, as well as land, livestock, pets and people poisoned by air pollutants. Even according to the government’s own experts, fracking will not lower energy bills. Despite what the government claims, the environmental risks are extremely high, and the damage already done by fracking in several countries is real.

Widespread opposition has already helped stop fracking in France and Bulgaria, with temporary bans in Holland, parts of the US, Germany, Switzerland and Austria. In my view and that of many others, it must be stopped here before serious damage is done. The alternatives? Cutting energy waste and developing the UK’s huge renewable energy potential. “Britain trails nearly all the European Union in providing renewable energy – we can boast of being ahead only of those global giants Malta and Luxembourg – meanwhile states such as the US and China are surging ahead with renewables. The refusal to provide a secure, supportive investment environment for renewables in the UK risks losing opportunities for jobs and businesses.” Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green Party.

FrackingwrongmoveJoin the legal block to prevent fracking under your home! It’s a desperate attempt to undermine democracy and law. Already 40,000 of us have signed up to join the wrongmove legal block to stop #fracking under our homes – let’s make it 50,000! 
Enter your postcode to find out if your home is under threat: www.wrongmove.org

More information at Frack Off.

3 Responses to Why fracking in the UK is absolutely the wrong move

  1. Aurla says:

    Despite overwhelming public opposition (including nearly 900 letters of objection to the planning application), West Sussex County Council has recommended that Cuadrilla be allowed to frack Balcombe! It turns out that WSCC also secretly invests in fracking companies, including Cuadrilla!😦

    https://www.facebook.com/FrackFreeSussex

    https://secure.greenpeace.org.uk/page/s/frack-free-uk?source=fb&subsource=share&utm_medium=fb&utm_source=gpeace&utm_campaign=fracking2

  2. Tim says:

    Huffington Post, 13th May 2014

    “George Osborne’s father-in-law Lord Howell, who was forced to apologise after calling for controversial fracking to take place in the “desolate” North East of England, has admitted that the coalition’s support for fracking is “seriously flawed”.

    Howell, who was a Foreign Office minister from 2010 to 2012, said that ministers were “MUCH too optimistic” about the potential benefits of shale gas exploration, adding that their excessive enthusiasm could “prove extremely dangerously [sic] politically when the reality unfolds”.

    The Tory peer, who was a government energy adviser until last April, used a column in the Journal of Energy Security to repeat his call for fracking in “remote (derelict) areas” of England.

    “Based on a lot of evidence and advice from all over, I view what is coming from the Cabinet Office, from Ministers and from DECC about shale gas and oil as being seriously flawed, needing correction and costing us dearly as this becomes evident, which it will,” the peer wrote.

    “A different tone and form of opinion leadership is needed if fracking is to go ahead successfully.”

    This comes as the government has thrown its weight behind shale gas extraction, with Osborne pledging to introduce the “most generous” system of tax breaks in the world to encourage fracking.”

  3. Tim says:

    Timesunion.com, 22nd April 2014

    “Making fracking safe is simply not possible..”

    Louis Allstadt,
    Retired Executive Vice President of Mobil.

    One might expect the former Executive Vice President of Mobil Oil to sing the praises of opening up New York to natural gas hydraulic fracturing, but having worked 31 years for Mobil, he has urged the state not to allow it and instead to encourage development of more renewable energy.

    “Now the industry will tell you that fracking has been around a long time. While that is true, the magnitude of the modern technique is very new,” he said. “A fracked well can require between 50 and 100 times the water and chemicals compared to older wells and this requires thousands of trucks coming and going. It is much more a heavy industrial activity”

    Frack wells’ leakage of methane, a potent greenhouse gas linked to ongoing man-made climate change, is another issue that troubles him… “Methane is leaking from wells at far greater rates than were previously estimated” he said.

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